It’s generally safe to assume that the smaller the chili, the hotter it will be. These tiny little Xiao Mi La chilies are seriously hot and for real chili heads. A single pepper, broken up or left whole, can add a toasty flavor and warm chili heat to most any dish. Use a few in our Spicy Stir-Fried Cumin Beef
—you won’t need to use as many as the original recipe calls for, since the heat of Xiao Mi La goes a long way. Or grind a few peppers into spice rubs for barbecue meats, such as our Piri Piri Chicken
The Mala Market—named after the term for the spicy-numbing combination of chilies and Sichuan peppercorns that defines Sichuan cooking—imports top-grade dried chilies and spices of remarkable quality. Their chilies are intensely fragrant and pliant (the sure sign of a fresh dried chili), and the spices are clear and boldly flavored. Unlike other importers, the Mala Market maintains close control over its supply chain; these chilies go straight from the agrarian Guizhou province to the company’s packers in Chengdu.